We use Polycom phones for OCS. And we recommend them to clients. They're great when you want an external phone for using VoIP, just like a regular phone. (Well, a bit better, since Polycom phones also have a screen displaying your contacts' Presence status.)

However, these are all new Polycom phones. Not refurbs.

One of our clients decided to order a bunch of refurbished Polycom phones for some new hires (without consulting us, mind you). A few days after that they called us. “We're having Internet problems,” they said. “Everything's going so slow!”

So we sent someone out to have a look. Sure enough, their bandwidth was very low. Connection was fine; something was eating up bandwidth from inside their network. The servers? Nope. An employee PC? No.

Turns out that one of the refurbished Polycom phones was sucking up bandwidth like a supercharged vacuum cleaner. For no reason at all. We removed that phone and replaced it with a new Polycom phone. And the speed problem evaporated.

We tested the refurbished phone back at our office. But we never determined why it decided to become a bandwidth hog.

So, here's our Insider Tip for the week. Are you looking at Polycom for VoIP phones? Great idea! Buy new phones though. You might save money on refurbs…but you could also lose out on work time when they misbehave.

OCS Insider Tip: Avoid Using Refurbished Polycom Phones for VoIP
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